The Wisdom of Solomon Points to the Wisdom of Jesus
In one of my quiet times, I again read the passage where king Solomon asked God for wisdom (1 Kings 3:1-15). In the following verses, the wisdom was brilliantly displayed.
There were two prostitutes who went to the king (v.16). They were living in the same house (v.17). Both of them gave birth, with the second one giving birth three days after the first one (v.18). But the second prostitute’s son died, for she laid on him (v.19). Cunningly, she exchanged her dead son for the live one while the first prostitute was asleep (v.20). When the first prostitute woke up to nurse her child, she found the child dead. Examining closely, she later found that the dead child wasn’t hers (v.21). Then the two prostitutes had an argument whose child was really hers. You understand the problem, right?
So how did Solomon determine the real mother? He asked for a sword, wanting to divide the living child into two (vv.24-25). But the first prostitute, the mother of the living child, asked the king to give the child to the other prostitute, for she “yearned for her son” (v.26a). The other one wanted the child dead (v.26b). Then it was determined by the wise king that the child belonged to the first woman (v.27).
I was amazed by the king’s wisdom (and I’m always in awe of it whenever I read of this passage). I join Israel in awestruck:
28And all Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered, and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him to do justice. (v.28, emphasis added)
But haven’t I seen this kind of amazing display of wisdom elsewhere in the Bible? Let’s go to the New Testament.
In Matthew 22, Jesus was questioned by the religious leaders. In verses 15-21, the Pharisees “plotted how to entangle him in his words” (v.15). They asked Him on paying taxes. But their plan failed. Instead:
22When they heard [Jesus’ answer], they marveled. And they left him and went away. (v.22, emphasis added)
Then in verses 23-32, another sect of religious leaders—the Sadducees—asked Him a question. This time, it’s about the resurrection. (But Sadducees don’t believe in resurrection [v.23]. Clearly, they just wanted to discredit Him). But they weren’t successful either. Instead:
33And when the crowd heard [Jesus’ answer], they were astonished at his teaching. (v.33, emphasis added)
What an amazing display of wisdom by Jesus! Just like whenever I read Solomon’s display of wisdom, I’m always in awe of Jesus’ display of it.
So what’s the point? It is this: The wisdom of Solomon, even though high and amazing, only serves as a pointer to a far, or even infinitely, greater wisdom—the wisdom of Jesus.
And I am glad that I have such a wise God in Jesus. I’m reminded of what God said in Isaiah 55:8-9:
8For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. 9For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
God is so wise that His foolishness is even wiser than man’s wisdom (1 Corinthians 1:25). If this is the case, then I just have to trust Jesus and His infinite wisdom.